Hamilton grabs pole position in Shanghai
Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton will start from pole position in the Formula 1 Chinese Grand Prix at Shanghai International Circuit. The former champion was the fastest when it was the most important while Ferrari again proved that is able to compete with Mercedes.
Sebastian Vettel dominated first qualifying round and scored best lap time – 1:33.078 – what was 0.255s better than the result of Hamilton. Interestingly, Ferrari was on soft tires, while all other teams were on the supersoft tires.
In the last seconds of the first round, Antonio Giovinazzi, who replaced Pascal Wehrlein in the seat of Sauber for the second time this season, hit the barriers and crashed badly, so he was unable to continue the session.The big surprise was that Max Verstappen failed to qualify for the second round. Esteban Ocon, Jolyon Palmer, Romain Grosjean, and Stoffel Vandoorne also were eliminated from Q2.
In the second qualifying round Ferrari than Mercedes. Now Kimi Raikkonen was the fastest with 1:32.181 what was +0.210 better than the time set by Vettel, while Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas were 3rd and 4th respectively. Marcus Ericsson, Fernando Alonso, Kevin Magnussen, and Carlos Sainz Jr failed to qualify for the final round.
When it was really important Mercedes fought back. Lewis Hamilton was brilliant in the last 12 minutes and won the pole position for the 6th time in a row setting the time 1:31.678, beating Vettel by 0.186s. Bottas will start from P3 and will be accompanied with Raikkonen in the second starting row.